Heidi, Abby, and Walt. This month we are giving a shout out to The Green Team. This family of bike mechanics is far from green, unless you count those old Raleighs (center photo) they built up for the DC Tweed ride. This crew certainly knows their way around bikes and our bike stands and we love seeing them in any combination during our regular Thursday night volunteer nights. In fact, we've been missing them while we put a pause on those volunteer activities.
We don't always have the full team with us, but Walt works just down the road so when he finishes up his day he often pops in for an hour or two every Thursday. Mostly they help us pull off those valuable parts we include in our shipments that are critical to the mechanics working to get your old bikes back to life. Walt was with us for our last session last month before we decided to halt all our volunteer activities on March 12. He, like many of our regular volunteers, was disappointed to lose our outlet to wind down after a long day at work, but as a medical professional he certainly understood the importance and severity of the decision our board came to at the time.
In addition to being a badass naval doctor, and very levelheaded person who was on point with the pandemic for sure, he is just a genuinely nice guy who loves giving back and helping Bikes for the World on whatever tasks Jonathan throws his way. I love that he has introduced Abby to working on bikes and learning the value of hands-on work. I have always said that one thing I love the most about BfW is the Stone Ridge program because of what it offers to young women who would traditionally not be exposed to opportunities to work with their hands, learn the associated skills, especially given how few women are working in the bike industry.Taylor Jones, Executive Director
That all seems like a lifetime ago as we now more closures and the entire DMV is staying at home per our Governors/Mayor. Walt is one of our honored heroes still reporting to work, but he's spending his weekends turning wrenches in his own workshop on his bikes at home. Many of our partner shops are also still open as essential transportation businesses. We have received reports that many of them are busy as folks pull out their old bikes and turn to riding for exercise and as an escape from the house.
We'd like to stress again, for those of you cleaning out garages and sheds and finding bikes to donate: PLEASE SAVE THEM FOR US! Our volunteers like the Greenhalghs, are anxious to get back to work with us to prep those bikes for our partners overseas. Walt regularly helps us build that stockpile of spare parts we need for mechanics and as soon as we open again, we'll be shipping as soon as possible. This is going to be even more important than ever as everything opens back up in the coming months. Many of the countries where our bikes are donated are also on total or partial lock downs. Like us, this is affecting their economies, businesses, and families. Right now we are alone together to save each other and get through this, and going forward we will again need to come together to recover.